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L.A. Hits 300 Homicides in 1 Year for First Time in a Decade

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Los Angeles has hit 300 homicides in a year. This is the first time in a decade that LA has seen such numbers.

What We Know:

  • The LAPD Twitter account posted a tweet about the increased violence. The tweet also links lacrimestoppers.org.

  • According to KTLA, Los Angeles is not alone with their increased violence; big cities around the country have experienced spikes in violence. 
  • LA has experienced far more violence previously, more than 1,000 homicides in the ’80s and ’90s. Recent decades have experienced less violence, not surpassing 300 since 2009. The city has seen a 25% increase in killings over the last year; shootings are up 32%.
  • From Saturday into Sunday morning, there were four killings among other shootings in LA, the first of which was a 50-year old homeless man. Police found him at around 3 pm near the intersection of Long Beach Ave and East 25th Street. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene. Police believe the suspect is also experiencing homelessness. 
  • The second victim was a 17-year-old boy riding a bicycle. Around 8:23 pm, officers were called to the 1700 block of Imperial Highway. Here, they found the boy suffering gunshot wounds; he was pronounced dead on the way to the hospital. According to police spokeswoman Melissa Podany, the boy “was riding his bicycle in that general area when an unknown suspect approached in a vehicle and fired multiple shots”. 
  • A little before 9pm, police responded to another shooting. A 20-year-old man was found fatally wounded by gunfire near West 75th Street and South Broadway. 
  • Around 9:20pm, a double shooting occurred near Vermont Avenue and West 93rd Street. Unknown suspects opened fire, injuring a 37-year-old man and a 41-year-old woman. Both were transported in critical condition. The woman passed away a little after midnight local time.
  • Additionally to the fatal shooting, several were left injured. Of those injured, a 19-year-old heard gunfire to which he pulled over then realized he had been hit. Around 11:30am, a 27-year-old man was approached by a group of four. According to Podany, they “demanded to know where he was from”. One of the suspects then fired two shots into the man’s car and fled. Later around 6pm, two 30-year-old men were shot by four people who rolled past in their vehicle. Lastly, around 7am the next day, a 19-year-old man was found suffering from a gunshot wound. 

The LAPD says anyone with information can submit an anonymous tip to lacrimestoppers.org. The LAPD will offer rewards in some cases. 

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Crime

Prosecutors Seek to Modify Kyle Rittenhouse’s Bond Agreement

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Kenosha County prosecutors have requested to modify Kyle Rittenhouse’s bond after he was spotted at a bar last week.

What We Know:

  • Just hours after his arraignment on January 5th, Kyle Rittenhouse was seen at a bar in Wisconsin with his mother. The 18-year-old gunman released on bail was seen drinking beer at Pudgy’s Pub in Mount Pleasant wearing a T-shirt that read “Free as F–k.” The prosecution states that Rittenhouse was posing with others while flashing the “OK” sign, a known gesture used among white supremacists.  Five adult males at the bar allegedly serenaded Rittenhouse with the Proud Boys anthem, ‘Proud of Your Boy.’
  • Although it is legal in Wisconsin for someone under the age of 21 to possess and consume alcohol if a parent is present, prosecutors are asking the Kenosha County Circuit Court to modify the bond conditions to “prohibit the defendant from publicly displaying symbols and gestures that are associated with violent white supremacist groups and from associating with known members of those groups, particularly the Proud Boys.” They believe Rittenhouse’s actions could result in potential witness intimidation. 
  • According to CNN, the Rittenhouse is out on a $2 million bail after being arrested in connection with a fatal shooting on August 23rd, 2020 in the midst of Black Lives Matter protests that had broken out in the Wisconsin city over the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
  • Rittenhouse opened fire on protestors and is facing two felony charges of homicide in the deaths of two men and a felony attempted homicide charge in the wounding of another man. His attorneys have maintained that he acted in self-defense. 

A bond modification hearing has not been scheduled yet. For now, Rittenhouse is expected to appear back in court on March 10th.

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Riot Coverage: Banks Drop Trump, FBI has received over 70,000 tips, Twitter closes over 70,000 accounts

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One week following the violent ambush by pro-Trump rioters at the U.S. Capitol, many actions against the President and his supporters have been taken by Trump’s banks, the FBI, and social media companies.

What We Know:

  • According to Bloomberg, tensions between Trump and the financial industry began late Monday when Deutsche Bank AG decided to cut ties with the President and his family as they waited for him to pay off roughly $300 million in loans in the upcoming years News.
  • This was the first bank to remove Trump as a client, quickly followed by the Manhattan-based Signature Bank, which announced it’s closing Trump accounts holding about $5.3 million. The following day, Professional Bank, which once allowed the President an $11 million mortgage, announced it would cut business with the Trump Organization and “will be winding down the relationship effective immediately.”
  • Additionally, on Monday, the FBI announced that it had received more than 70,000 tips and other information as it seeks to arrest those who participated in the violent ambush at the U.S. Capitol last week. The agency claims to have received tips, including photos and videos. They also announced that photos had been released of the individual(s) responsible for placing suspected pipe bombs around D.C. and are even offering a $50,000 reward for their identification.
  • NBC News reports that more than 90 arrests of people allegedly connected to Wednesday’s events in the capital had been made as of Sunday.
  • On the same Monday, Trump’s supporters and culprits of the Capitol attack were banned from Twitter, the social media giant confirmed in a blog post. Over 70,000 accounts that share content concerning the QAnon conspiracy theory were banned from the site last week, last week “to protect the conversation on our service from attempts to incite violence, organize attacks, and share deliberately misleading information about the election outcome.”
  • Aside from permanently suspending the President’s own account, Twitter also permanently suspended accounts of former national security adviser Michael Flynn, pro-Trump attorney Sidney Powell and former 8kun administrator Ron Watkins.

Consequences from the Capitol riots have seemed to damage Trump’s presidency and those affiliated with him in his final days as President. Days which may contain even harsher punishments as the House prepares to impeach.

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Lisa Montgomery Executed, The First Woman Put to Death By U.S. Government Since 1953

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Lisa Montgomery pictured in a police mug shot after her arrest.

A Kansas woman was executed Wednesday for killing an expectant mother in Missouri and cutting the baby from her womb. For the first time in about seven decades, the U.S. government has put to death a female inmate.

What We Know:

  • Lisa Montgomery, 52, was declared dead at 1:31 a.m. after receiving a lethal injection in the federal prison complex located at Terre Haute, Indiana.
  • Since July, she was the 11th prisoner killed at the facility when President Donald Trump, a passionate advocate of capital punishment, resumed federal executions following 17 years without one.
  • As the curtain was lifted in the execution chamber, Montgomery seemed momentarily confused as she looked at journalists looking at her from behind thick glass. A woman standing over her shoulder reached over and asked if she had any last words. “No,” Montgomery replied. She said nothing else.
  • As the lethal injection initiated, Montgomery kept licking her lips and gasped briefly as pentobarbital, the lethal drug, entered her body via IVs on both arms. A few minutes later, her midsection palpitated for a moment but immediately stopped.

“The craven bloodlust of a failed administration was on full display tonight,” Kelley Henry, Montgomery’s attorney, expressed in a statement. “Everyone who participated in the execution of Lisa Montgomery should feel shame.”

  • It came after hours of legal arguing before the Supreme Court cleared the way for the execution to move forward.
  • In 2004, Montgomery killed 23-year-old Bobbie Jo Stinnett in the northwest Missouri town of Skidmore. She used a rope to choke Stinnett, who was eight months pregnant at the time, then cut out the baby girl from the womb with a kitchen knife. Montgomery took the child with her and tried to pass the baby girl off as her own.

Montgomery was the first of three federal prisoners programmed to die before next week’s installation of President-elect Joe Biden, who is expected to terminate federal executions.

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